Brotherhoods (Ukrainian : братства, bratstva; literally, "fraternities") were the secular unions of Eastern Orthodox citizens or lay brothers affiliated with individual churches in the cities throughout the Ruthenian part of the Polish–Lithuanian Commonwealth such as Lviv, Wilno, Lutsk, Vitebsk, Minsk, and Kiev. They adapted the structure of the Western medieval confraternities and trade guilds.
The Orthodox brotherhoods, first documented in 1463 (Lviv Dormition Brotherhood), were consolidated in the aftermath of the Union of Brest (1596) in order to oppose a rise in Roman Catholic proselytism, Jesuit expansionism and general Polonization.The brotherhoods attempted to stem the state-supported Catholic missionary activities by publishing books in the Cyrillic script and financing a net of brotherhood schools which offered education in the Ruthenian language. The famous Kiev Mohyla Academy grew out of one such school under the umbrella of the Brotherhood Monastery in Kiev. The Dormition Church, Lviv was financed by the brotherhood of the same name; its members also supported the Cossack risings in the east of Ukraine. The powerful Ostrogski family provided political support for their activities.
The activity of the Orthodox fraternities helped preserve the national culture of Ukraine and Belarus throughout the Counter-Reformation era.Most were closed in the course of the 18th century when Catholic proselytism was on the wane. Some were revived in the late 19th century in order to stem "atheist propaganda" of the Nihilists. The Brotherhood of Saints Cyril and Methodius promoted national awareness, helping the Ukrainians of Imperial Russia discover their national identity. The Ostrog bratstvo was reinstituted by Countess Bludova, an ardent admirer of the Ostrogski family.
The history of Christianity in Ukraine dates back to the earliest centuries of the history of Christianity, to the Apostolic Age, with mission trips along the Black Sea and a legend of Saint Andrew even ascending the hills of Kiev. It has remained the dominant religion in the country since its acceptance in 988 by Vladimir the Great, who brought it from Byzantine Crimea and instated it as the state religion of medieval Kievan Rus' (Ruthenia), with the metropolitan see in Kiev.
The Ukrainian Greek Catholic Church is a Byzantine Rite Eastern Catholic Church in full communion with the Pope and the worldwide Catholic Church. It is the second-largest particular church in the Catholic Church. It is part of the Major Archiepiscopal Churches of the Catholic Church that are not distinguished with a patriarchal title.
The Union of Brest, or Union of Brześć, was the 1595-96 decision of the Ruthenian Orthodox Church eparchies (dioceses) in the Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth to break relations with the Eastern Orthodox Church and to enter into communion with, and place itself under the authority of the Pope of Rome. The Eparchy of Mukachevo that was located in the Kingdom of Hungary was left out of the process. The union established the Ruthenian Uniate Church.
Josaphat Kuntsevych, O.S.B.M., was a Polish-Lithuanian monk and archeparch (archbishop) of the Ruthenian Catholic Church, who on 12 November 1623 was killed by an angry mob in Vitebsk, Vitebsk Voivodeship, in the Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth. He is "the best-known victim" of anti-Catholic violence related to implementing the Union of Brest, and is declared a martyr and saint of the Catholic Church.
Meletius Smotrytsky, né Maksym Herasymovytch Smotrytsky, Archbishop of Polotsk, was a writer, a religious and pedagogical activist of the Polish–Lithuanian Commonwealth, a Ruthenian linguist whose works influenced the development of the Eastern Slavic languages. His book "Slavonic Grammar with Correct Syntax" (1619) systematized the study of Church Slavonic and, according to Vinokur, "became the standard grammar book in Russia right up till the end of the 18th century." He believed in the revival of the Orthodox religion in traditionally Slavic lands centered in the Tsardom of Russia.
Konstanty Wasyl Ostrogski was an Orthodox magnate of the Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth, a Ruthenian (Ukrainian) prince, starost of Volodymyr-Volynskyi, marshal of Volhynia and voivode of the Kiev Voivodeship. Ostrogski refused to help False Dmitriy I and supported Jan Zamoyski.
Metropolitan Peter was an influential Ruthenian Orthodox theologian and reformer, Metropolitan of Kiev, Halych and All Rus' from 1633 until his death.
Holy Dormition Pochayiv Lavra is a monastery in Pochayiv, Kremenets Raion, Ternopil Oblast, Ukraine. The monastery belongs to the Ukrainian Orthodox Church. For centuries, it has been the foremost spiritual and ideological centre of various Orthodox denominations in Western Ukraine. The monastery tops a 60-metre hill in the town of Pochayiv, 18 km southwest of Kremenets and 70 km north of Ternopil.
Ostroh Academy was an academy located in Ostroh, Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth. It is considered to be the first institution of higher education in Ukraine, dating to 1576 and founded by Polish nobleman of Ruthenian descent Konstanty Wasyl Ostrogski. The university was closed in 1636 soon after opening the Jesuit College in Ostroh.
Michael Rohoza was the Ruthenian Metropolitan of Kiev, Galychyna and All-Ruthenia from 1588 to his death in 1599. In 1595 he signed the Union of Brest which moved the Ruthenian Church from the jurisdiction of the Patriarchate of Constantinople to the jurisdiction of the Pope, thus forming the Ruthenian Uniate Church.
The Dormition or Assumption Church is a Ukrainian Orthodox church in the city of Lviv, Ukraine. At present it is leased to the Ukrainian Autocephalous Orthodox Church.
Isaiah Kopinsky was a Ruthenian Orthodox metropolitan.
Job Boretsky was a Ukrainian Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth Eastern Orthodox metropolitan.
Sylvester Kossów, Kosiv or Kosov was a Ruthenian Orthodox metropolitan of the Polish–Lithuanian Commonwealth and Polish-Ruthenian writer. He served as metropolitan of Kiev, Galicia and all Ruthenia (1647–1657) during the Khmelnytsky uprising. His official title was Metropolitan of Kiev, Galicia and All-Ruthenia.
Hedeon (Hryhorii) Balaban, or Gedeon Bałaban, was the bishop of Lviv from 1569 to 1607.
Konstanty Korniakt was a merchant of Greek descent, active throughout Central and Eastern Europe; a leaseholder of royal tolls who collected customs duty on behalf of the king. During his lifetime he was the wealthiest man in Lviv and even owned numerous villages. He was a wholesale merchant and founder of the Korniakt family dynasty.
This is a list of Leaders of the Ukrainian Greek Catholic Church.
The Stauropegion Institute was one of the most important cultural and educational institutions in Galicia from the end of the 18th century until World War II. For much of its history it was controlled by Galician Russophiles.
Kyrylo Stavrovetsky-Tranquillon was a Ruthenian (Ukrainian) church figure of the Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth, poet, publisher, archimandrite of the Yelets Dormition Monastery in Chernihiv. He is better known for his publishing efforts which provided Ruthenian citizens of the Commonwealth with literature in native language.
Lviv Dormition Brotherhood also known as Lviv Stauropegion Brotherhood was an influential religious organization associated with the Dormition Church in Lviv and one of the oldest Brotherhood Orthodox organizations. It was first an association of Orthodox and then, from 1708, also Greek Catholic burghers in Lviv. Like other brotherhoods in Ukraine, it is also a military force tasked with defending the Orthodox church and the faith, particularly against Polish and Latin influences.
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